Santa Anita—Main Office
(626) 447-2145 Office
(626) 446-0270 Fax
858) 792-4488 Office
(858) 792-4484 Fax
Golden Gate Fields
(510) 524-3081 Office
(510) 524-5280 Fax
When Tennyson wrote, "Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering 'it will be happier,'" he may as well have been penning an anthem for every breeder, owner, trainer, and horseplayer.
In California, with the closure of iconic Hollywood Park after three-quarters of a century, and the transferral of its racing dates to Santa Anita, Del Mar, and Los Alamitos, the sport is relying on that smile more than ever. The next several months are a critical period of transition, since California's racing leadership spent nearly a year of angst before agreeing to an expensive stabling and training proposition – using Santa Anita, San Luis Rey Downs, Los Alamitos, and Barretts Racing at Pomona – to provide facilities for the 3,400 or more horses required to populate competitive fields for the new year-around calendar.
Critical to the plan is the appearance in 2014 of two-year-olds in comparable numbers to previous years, so that the crown jewel of California racing – Del Mar's summer season – can continue to sparkle, and lead to healthy programs at Santa Anita come fall and another Breeders’ Cup meeting.
David Jerkens To Become Racing Secretary at Del Mar
(January 30, 2014)
David Jerkens, currently the racing secretary at Northern California’s Golden Gate Fields, will relocate to Southern California in early June and assume the role of racing secretary at Del Mar, it has been announced.
Jerkens, 35, is being brought on at Del Mar to strengthen the racing department headed by Tom Robbins, the track’s executive vice president for racing and industry relations, as well as its long-time racing secretary. Robbins will continue to work out of the seaside track’s racing office, but will turn over the racing secretary duties there to Jerkens so he (Robbins) can dedicate more time to other track assignments, including several national and international projects and committees that demand his attention. Additionally, Del Mar will hold a second fall meeting this year covering the month of November, putting more requirements on the track’s racing office and its personnel.
ATTENTION THOROUGHBRED TRAINERS
Affordable Care Act - Employer Notice
Requirements - Due October 1, 2013
(September 25, 2013)
FROM: Alan F. Balch, CTT Executive Director
SUBJECT: Affordable Care Act – New Health Insurance Marketplace Coverage Options and Your Health Coverage – Employer Notice Requirements
Starting in January 2014, most people will be required by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act ("Affordable Care Act," also known as "Obama Care") to have health insurance or pay a penalty if they don't. Coverage can include employer-provided insurance, coverage you buy on your own, Medicare or Medi-Cal.
The Affordable Care Act has created a new type of online marketplace for purchasing health insurance coverage for individuals without such insurance. This marketplace is referred to as a Health Insurance Marketplace, or an Exchange. Beginning in October 2013, you will be able to find and compare health insurance plans through the Marketplace and coverage may start as early as January 1, 2014.
Under the Affordable Care act, all employers covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act “FLSA” (generally those that have at least one employee and at least $500,000 in annual dollar volume of business) must notify their employees about the new Health Insurance Marketplace by October 1, 2013. HOWEVER, there is no penalty or fine to employers for not providing this notice.
It is important to notify your employees concerning the Health Insurance Marketplace to help them understand and navigate the changes coming to health care in 2014. Below, in both English and Spanish, for employers with 50 or less employees, are links to model notices created by the Department of Labor that acceptably fulfill employer notification requirements. Please note that you must complete Part B of the notice before distributing it to your employees. The model notices below are available in convenient fill-in form.
Employers with more than 50 employees must provide a slightly different version of the notice. It is necessary to complete Part A, "How Can I Get More Information?", and Part B of the notice before distributing it to your employees. These model notices are also in fill-in form and follow below:
The below links contain some pertinent information from Covered California, this state's health insurance marketplace/exchange, to help you better understand the Affordable Care Act and how it affects your employees and you personally.
Trainer Cliff Sise Jr. savored the slow stroll from the paddock to a mezzanine box at Santa Anita Park in January, a walk interrupted several times by quizzical racetrackers asking him where he had been and when he was coming back. He appreciated the attention.
Sise, 62, has returned to a familiar post on the Southern California circuit, reassembling a stable after a hiatus of nearly three years devoted to supervising the Rancho Paseana training center and a brief stint in Saudi Arabia.
"I miss it and I'm excited about coming back," said Sise, who is regrouping at San Luis Rey Downs. "I miss the competition".
"It never goes out of your blood," said Sise of his lifelong passion. "I love training. I love horses. I love trying to do the right things by them. When you get owners that let you do the right thing, that usually works out for the horse."
ATTENTION THOROUGHBRED TRAINERS
CTHF Clinics Now Available to Treat Work-Related First Aid Injuries
(January 31, 2013)
CTHF Clinics Now Available to Treat Work-Related First Aid Injuries
Working with Finish Line Self-Insurance Group and the California Thoroughbred Trainers, the California Thoroughbred Horsemen's Foundation (CTHF) will begin treating workers' compensation cases at the medical clinics beginning February 1, 2013.
There have been many calls for the banning of raceday Lasix in Thoroughbred racing. The grandees of the sport, in the form of The Jockey Club, the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, etc. have decided that Lasix must go. Fortunately for the horses, the effort to bar Lasix in North America seems to have stalled.
Tuesday, the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission delayed action on a proposal to ban Lasix in that state. Wednesday, the New York State Racing and Wagering Commission was overwhelmed with thousands of comments opposing a proposed Lasix ban, including 500 pages of documentation from the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, representing owners and trainers.
A year ago, I was uncertain about the Lasix issue. Since then, I've studied the science, notably a South African study financed but now disavowed by the Jockey Club that shows (a) that some 80 percent of horses have at least internal bleeding when they race and (b) that Lasix helps eliminate or reduce the level of bleeding. The more I learned, the more I'm convinced that Lasix is the most humane solution to a persistent problem. In fact, I've become so convinced that I was deeply involved in drafting N.Y.T.H.A.'s response to the state.
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Horses bleed. While only a few (1 percent to 5 percent) bleed visibly through the nose or mouth, many more have internal bleeding in the lungs and trachea. And that internal bleeding causes cumulative damage. The more horses bleed, the more likely they are to bleed in the future. At the extremes, severe bleeding can cause a horse to die on the racetrack.
Lasix works. All the studies show that a modest dose of Lasix greatly reduces the incidence and severity of bleeding. Since Lasix was introduced in New York in 1995, severe, visible bleeding has been reduced by 76 percent. Whatever the cause of the far-too-many fatalities at Aqueduct this winter, it wasn't Lasix. As Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey said on this year's Kentucky Derby telecast, "I've never had a horse break down under me because of Lasix."
Unlike (now-barred) steroids and other illegal drugs, Lasix doesn't enable a horse to perform beyond its natural ability, only to be more likely to reach that ability. And whatever the situation may have been years ago, Lasix no longer interferes with testing for other illegal drugs. New York now tests racehorses for some 900 illegal substances, and leading equine toxicologists unanimously agree that Lasix doesn't mask any of those drugs.
If Lasix is barred, trainers will revert to the cruel and illegal methods used in the past to limit bleeding. They'll withhold water, and perhaps food, from horses for 24 hours or more before a race. They'll use illegal, and less effective, drugs like "Kentucky Red" or tranexamic acid – both of which have been detected in "Lasix-free" jurisdictions. Or they'll use trainer Woody Stephens's old trick of giving his grooms red towels to wipe off the blood before anyone noticed.
New York's horsemen support getting tough on the drug cheaters. We've proposed to the State Racing Board that they tighten limits on painkillers, corticosteroids and clenbuterol, and that they make permanent the current arrangements under which Lasix is administered in specified dosages by veterinarians who work for the state or the racetrack, not the trainers. But we don't support a Lasix ban that would inflict unnecessary pain on the horses that we love and that would serve no purpose other than the ego gratification of a few of the 1 percent.
This article does not necessarily represent the views of either N.Y.T.H.A. or B.E.S.T.
Steve Zorn, a lawyer and law professor in New York, is the racing manager of Castle Village Farm thoroughbred partnerships and a director of the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and the Backstretch Employees Service Team. He writes the Business of Racing blog.
California Horse Racing Board
1010 Hurley Way, Suite 300
Sacramento, CA 95825
Date: March 21, 2014
SUMMARY OF CHRB ACTIONS AND DISCUSSIONS 3-21-14
ARCADIA, CA – The California Horse Racing Board conducted its regular meeting Friday, February 21, 2014, at Santa Anita Park. Chairman Chuck Winner presided. 1ST Vice Chair Bo Derek, 2ND Vice Chair Richard Rosenberg, and Commissioners Madeline Auerbach, Steve Beneto, Jesse Choper, and George Krikorian were in attendance.
The Board finalized the Northern California racing calendar for 2015 by allocating racing dates for the latter half of the year to Golden Gate Fields and the northern fairs. The Board earlier approved the racing calendar for the first half of 2015 by allocating dates for the current meet at Golden Gate Fields through June 15.
The racing season will continue with dates allocated to the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton (June 17 through July 6) followed by the State Fair at Cal Expo (July 9 through July 26), the Sonoma County Fair in Santa Rosa (July 30 through August 16), the Humboldt County Fair in Ferndale (August 19 through August 30) and somewhat concurrently at Golden Gate Fields (August 21through September 13), the San Joaquin County Fair in Stockton (September 18 through September 27), the Big Fresno Fair in Fresno (October 1 through October 12), and finally at Golden Gate (October 15 through December 20). The various locations will designate their precise racing dates within these block allocations when each submits its license application three months before the start of its meet.
The Board approved for 45-day public notice a proposed regulatory amendment to require that authorized bleeder medication be administered by independent, third-party veterinarians along with a requirement for a prescription for furosemide (Lasix).
The summer may be drawing to a close, but the threat of Infectious Disease still lingers. Make sure your horse(s) is still safe. Pose your infectious disease questions to this month's expert, Dr. Phoebe Smith.
STUDY: IDENTIFYING SIGNS OF HUMERAL AND SCAPULAR FRACTURES
(November 28, 2012)
Study: Identifying Signs of Humeral and Scapular Fractures
Dr. Erin McKerney, in collaboration with Dr. Susan Stover from the J.D Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory, at UC Davis is conducting a study to better understand the events that lead to catastrophic fractures of the humerus and scapula in racehorses. These injuries can happen suddenly, unexpectedly and often without warning to horses under the care of a large variety of trainers. Complete fractures of the scapula and humerus are almost always fatal; but, when recognized early, the predisposing incomplete stress fractures can heal and horses are able to successfully return to racing.